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Famous Fiji resort lures buyers amid tourism surge

Expressions of interest are being sought for a renowned resort for sale on the Fijian island of Vanua Levu with huge expansion potential to capitalise on Fiji’s surging tourism.

Set in lush tropical surroundings beside clear Pacific waters on Fiji’s second largest island, Koro Sun Resort and Rainforest Spa markets itself as a “reef to rainforest heaven”.

Rated among Fiji’s top five hotels in Tripadvisor’s 2023 travellers’ choice awards, it has hosted production teams filming top international TV shows such as Survivor and The Bachelorette.

The resort sits just outside the township of Savusavu. It features a 4.5-star hotel with 56 guest suites, multiple restaurants, bars and pools, an award-winning luxury rainforest spa, plus an array of recreational amenities and activities.

Opened in 2000, and operated and developed by the original family owners ever since, the well-presented resort is being offered to buyers with vacant possession, as a freehold going concern. The sale includes a large landholding ripe for development to cater to soaring visitor demand amid an identified accommodation shortage.

Fiji’s tourism industry has bounced back vigorously post-Covid, attracting record February visitor arrivals of nearly 55,000 this year, up 16 percent year-on-year. Tourism is the country’s biggest foreign-exchange earner, contributing more than a third of gross domestic product.

Koro Sun Resort, located on Hibiscus Highway, Savusavu, Vanua Levu, Fiji, is being marketed for sale through Rick Kermode, Layne Harwood and Paul Dixon of Bayleys Real Estate. Expressions of interest are invited until Wednesday 22 June.

“Rarely do high-quality, established freehold going concern operations, with a strong trading history and sound investment fundamentals, come to the market in Fiji,” Kermode said.

“Koro Sun enjoys a proven reputation and income and rates consistently among Fiji’s preferred resorts. Vacant possession will allow new owners to bring their own brand, engage a new franchised operator or self-manage the business.

“It’s sure to attract significant buyer interest. With waterfront real estate becoming a rare and expensive commodity in many countries, coastal properties in Fiji often sell at prices considered affordable internationally,” said Kermode.

Harwood said the location on Vanua Levu – seen as Fiji’s next major growth area – would enable buyers to purchase more affordably than on Fiji’s main island and benefit from ongoing development and infrastructure improvements.

“These include roading improvements and a new marina in Savusavu Harbour that offers 137 berths for super yachts. The Fijian government is also evaluating the location of a new international airport and has created tax incentives for investors/developers in the region,” Harwood said.

Koro Sun Resort’s 56 air-conditioned guest rooms are a mix of freestanding bures (hut-style suites), villas and apartments, including waterfront and over-water bures. Guests have a choice of three restaurants, four bars and three pools, including a water slide and swim-up bar.

Other amenities include a recreation centre, kids’ club, nine-hole golf course and two tennis courts. There is also a marina and a dive shop, along with a three-bedroom manager’s home and eight-bedroom staff accommodation.

The sale includes some 48 hectares of freehold land, plus a nearly 2.9-hectare foreshore area on a long-term Crown lease. The resort occupies just over 12 hectares of the freehold land. The balance, to the rear, is undeveloped land in rainforest rising into a hillside with expansive views. This, and the leasehold coastal area, have identified development potential.

The more than 36 hectares of undeveloped freehold land to the north of the existing resort is earmarked for subdivision into 64 large residential lots. Alternatively, it provides scope to expand the resort, subject to approvals and establishing services and infrastructure.

Part of the foreshore lease area and freehold resort land are earmarked for the addition of more than 20 new villas and bures. Additionally, 13 fully-serviced freehold lots in a residential subdivision northwest of the resort, also owned by the vendor, could be made available as part of the sale.

Dixon said Koro Sun Resort was well positioned in the four-star accommodation market, with other local providers predominantly five-star, or with lower star ratings.

“Fiji has been one of the strongest performers in the Asia Pacific hospitality sectors prior to Covid-19. Post-pandemic, it has seen a tremendous recovery where the demand for tourism is progressively superseding 2019 levels.

“The growth in international visitors has driven good occupancy and revenue growth and requires an increase in capacity and new products, facilities and services – thus paving the way for investment opportunities. In the short to medium term, another 4,000 rooms are needed to meet growing demand.

“Fiji’s wider economy has been performing well on the back of a stable political environment over the last decade and increased infrastructure investment, including an upgrade of Savusavu Airport,” Dixon said.

Business financial and operating information is available to potential buyers upon signing a confidentiality agreement.

Click here for more information on the listing.

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